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The reality behind Brazilian Biofuels in New Zealand, with Padro Tiago Thorlby (CPT)

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The reality behind Brazilian Biofuels in New Zealand, with Padro Tiago Thorlby (CPT)


Published April 22, 2010


A presentation by Padre Thorlby, Pastoral Land Commission, Pernambuco, Brazil followed by a panel discussion. Earth Day meeting, 22 April 2010, 6–8.40pm, at St John's Hall, Wellington, cnr Willis/Dixon Sts.


Padre Thorlby is a priest who has worked for 25 years with landless people, homesteaders and sugarcane workers in Brazil. He provided a first-hand report of the ecological and human rights issues that result from cheap Brazilian ethanol, which is now being imported to fuel NZ cars. He was introduced by Kay Weir, Editor, Pacific Ecologist. The 25-minute film of sugar cane workers he showed has been snipped from this recording.

The meeting was organised by the Pacific Institute of Resource Management and supported by the Latin American Solidarity Committee; the Alternative Technology and Living Association & Friends of the Earth NZ. The Panel was chaired by economist Bill Rosenberg, NZ Council of Trade Unions, and included Paul Bruce, Wellington Regional Councillor; Father Gerard Burns, chair of Caritas/ social justice worker; Doug Clover, convenor, Sustainable Energy Forum; Jim Kebble, founder, Commonsense Organics and Kay Weir, Editor, Pacific Ecologist.

Resolution agreed to by the meeting
This meeting calls for the NZ government to halt the import of biofuels from Brazil and other third world countries because of their unsustainable production and their social and environmental impacts and calls for a mandatory sustainability code for biofuels.

The Brazilian biofuels issue is covered in depth in Pacific Ecologist #17.


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